the coronavirus confinement has multiplied the number of remote workers in our country, and once they enter the new normality, the numbers of teleworkers remain very high, because it is the main measure taken by companies to ensure the safety of workers and customers, and thus prevent contagion.
It seems that work from home has come to stay, which has caused the Ministry of Labour has drawn up a draft Law establishing telework legislation,since until now the only legal reference to this type of work was present in article 13 of the Workers’ Statute, which is outdated and insufficient.
The draft Law on Telework Legislation was presented on 26 June, setting out minimums, guarantees and rights to prevent abuse, and ensuring the digital disconnection of teleworkers.
In this post we will review the key points of the teleworklegislation included in this new draft Law, so that if your company has implemented telework, pay attention and take note because you are interested in this.
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Remote Work: Express Guide to Rights and Obligations for Companies.
Telework legislation: key points you need to know
> Clear establishment of the working day
One of the dangers of telework was that, in most cases, remote workers typically worked longer than their work schedule marked. The reason is that when they are at home workers do not have the need to leave their jobs, which directly affects the reconciliation of family life and free time.
One of the objectives pursued by the new telework legislation is to establish a clear telework schedule,in which both the company and the workers are clear about their working day.
At the end of that day, the worker will not be able to answercalls, emails or anything related to work.
> Hybrid model
The new legislation on telework shows the hybrid model, which consists of combining face-to-face work with remote work. A form of organization that is highly implemented in much of the countries of the European Union, and that offers multiple advantages to both companies and workers.
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The registration of working hours in the telework is also mandatory.
Telework legislation also provides for the possibility of negotiating a flexible timetable between the undertaking and the workers,in which the company may establish availability strips that the teleworker must comply with.
> Equal treatment
The draft Law also emphasizes the need to ensure equal treatment between teleworkersand employees who come to the workplace, who must be treated in the same way, regardless of where they work.
Telework legislation indicates that there can be no wage differences between face-to-faceand teleworker workers, or any other difference related to employee working conditions.
> Telework is voluntary
Another key point that emphasizes is that telework should be voluntary, and under no circumstances can it be imposed by companies. This means that, although it may be proposed by both parties, distance work will always be agreed by mutual agreement between workers and employers.
In addition, telework must be agreed in writing,and all agreed conditions for telework between employees and employers shall appear in that agreement.
> Compensation on telework expenses
Another aspect that seeks to regulate the new legislation of telework is the compensation of the expenses arising from telework. As indicated by the draft Law, teleworkers shall have full right to have all the means, tools and equipment necessary for the performance of their work, as well as to the total compensation of the expenses derived: Internet, water, light, etc. This compensation must be collected by collective agreement.
> Right to privacy and privacy
Another highlight is the right to privacy and privacy of workers,and to guarantee this right companies will not be able to require the installation of programs or applications on workers’ devices. Nor may they require the use of personal equipment for the performance of work.
> Right to digital disconnection
One of the most common problems associated with remote work is time management, and the new legislation of telework will regulate the right to digital disconnection of teleworkers,limiting the use of technological means of business communication, guaranteeing respect for the duration of the working day,… Etc.
These are the main key points contained in the new legislation of telework in the draft Law, with which the Government intends to regulate and respond to the main doubts that exist in our country about remote work. In any case, this regulation is not yet approved and may be amended.